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How many loanwords in Chinese have Chinese equivalents?

Example: 三文鱼 is a loanword, borrowed from English, meaning salmon, but Chinese also has the word 鲑鱼 meaning salmon.

Are there a lot of these kinds of word-sets?

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Yes there are!(But don't expect me to list all of them) –  Bob the zealot Jun 27 at 18:10
    
Bob, you're so zealous. –  user3306356 Jun 28 at 1:56
    
Is that a good thing or a bad thing? –  Bob the zealot Jun 28 at 1:57

4 Answers 4

up vote 11 down vote accepted

I'm not sure where you could get an accurate count for how many there are. Considering that loanwords have been coming into Chinese for thousands of years, it definitely won't be a trivial task.

There is certainly quite a few, however, not all of which is current/widespread/universal. I'll list some here, and edit more in if I think of any later:

  • Angel: 安琪兒 = 天使
  • Bacon: 培根 = 煙肉
  • Blog: 博客 / 部落格 = 網誌
  • Boycott: 杯葛 = 抵制
  • Bus: 巴士 = 公共汽車
  • Bye-Bye: 掰掰 = 再見
  • Camera: 開麥拉 / 卡麥拉 = 照相機
  • Cheese: 芝士 / 起司 / 起士 = 奶酪 / 乳酪
  • Cream: 克林姆 = 奶油
  • Copy: 拷貝 = 複製
  • Daddy: 爹地 = 爸爸
  • E-mail: 伊媚兒 / 依妹兒 = 電子郵件
  • Engine: 引擎 = 發動機 / 動力機 / 機
  • Fillet: 菲力 =
  • Gas: 瓦斯 = 天然氣
  • (House) Party: 轟趴 = 聚會
  • Index: 引得 = 索引 / 檢目 / 總檢
  • Laser: 雷射 = 激光
  • Logic: 邏輯 = 理則
  • Mommy: 媽咪 = 媽媽
  • Motel: 摩鐵 = 汽車旅館
  • Mini: 迷你 =
  • Party: 派對 = 舞會 / 聚會 / 聯歡會
  • Polish: 泡立水 = 蟲膠清漆 / 酒精清漆
  • Rifle: 來福槍 = 步槍
  • Romantic: 羅曼蒂克 = 浪漫
  • Sardine: 沙丁魚 = 鰛 / 鰯
  • Sauce: 沙司 =
  • Sauna: 桑拿 = 蒸氣浴
  • Scooter: 速可達 = 輕機車
  • Shampoo: 香波 = 洗髮精
  • Shopping: 血拼 = 逛街購物
  • Show: = 節目
  • Tank: 坦克 = 戰車
  • Taxi: 的士 = 計程車 / 出租車
  • Tobacco: 淡巴菰 = 菸草
  • Typhoon: 颱風 = 颶風
  • Quduq: 胡同 / 衚衕 = 小巷
  • おばさん: 歐巴桑 = 老太婆
  • おじさん: 歐吉桑 = 老頭子
  • パチンコ: 柏青哥 / 扒金宫 = 彈珠機
  • たたみ: 塌塌米 = 疊蓆
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5  
Note some of the loanwords in this list seem exclusively used in Taiwan (such as the Japanese loanwords) while some others are from old Shanghai pidgin English and is widely used across China today. –  NS.X. Jun 27 at 18:54
    
Hmm, I thought 歐巴桑/歐吉桑 has some currency on the mainland (or at least in Hong Kong), and that pachinko and 塌塌米 are fairly standard. Is that not the case? –  Semaphore Jun 27 at 19:04
1  
I can't speak for Hong Kong or even Southern China, but in Beijing, 欧巴桑/欧吉桑 are only known to fans of Taiwan TV shows and ACG (Anime, Cartoon, Games) community, even within which very few people know the word 柏青哥. Some loanwords are hardly understood and almost never used such as 開麥拉, 克林姆 and 沙司. –  NS.X. Jun 27 at 20:04
    
You listed typhoon here. Are you claiming 台风 is a transliteration? AFAIK, the origins of both "Typhoon" and "台风" are disputed, but it doesn't seem likely that the Chinese is from the English. –  Stumpy Joe Pete Jun 28 at 0:33
3  
胡同 is a Mongolian loan too - for I guess what Chinese would call 小巷 –  user3306356 Jun 28 at 10:23

Adding to the previous list:

Bowling: 保龄球 bao ling qiu 滾木球
Buffet: 蒲飞 pu fei 自助餐
Calorie: 卡路里 ka lu li 热量单位
Cartoon: 卡通 ka tong 漫画
Motor: 摩托 mo tuo 电动机
Sundae: 新低 xin di 水果奶油,冰淇淋
T-Shirt: T-血 T-xue 短袖汗衫, 短袖圆领衫
Toast: 多士,吐司 duo shi, tu si 烤面包
Vitamin: 维他命 wei ta ming 维生素

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During the May Fourth Movement, many terms were "imported" from Japan to enrich the Chinese vocabulary for translation of Western idea. Not to mention that China, Hong Kong and Taiwan have been different translation for the same English word, for example:

Cheese = 芝士 (HK) / 起司 (Taiwan) / 奶酪 (China)

Toast = 多士 (HK) / 吐司 (Taiwan) / 烤面包 (China)

Hence, it is very difficult to come up with a definite answer to your question.

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Again, I couldn't comment due to not enough reputation so I'm posting an answer here.

Romantic: 羅曼蒂克 = 浪漫 is incorrect. they are both translated by sound. It is said a Japanese (actually a very famous one), Shouseki Natsume (夏目漱石), created the Sino-Japanese word 浪漫(ロマン) from the first moras of romantic(ロマンチック). While who did it is still debated, it is certain this is a loan word that is translated by its sound then clipped. In Japanese, ロマン is pronounced almost identical to Chinese 罗曼.

I must also comment: This question is asking for an endless list. What's the point? Can I create a question that ask for every Chinese characters ever existed?

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Not true. 浪漫 is a Chinese phrase attested since the Song Dynasty 【宋·蘇軾·與孟震同遊常州僧舍】年來轉覺此生浮 又作三吳浪漫遊. Though the meaning was different, by the Qing Dynasty one could glimpse its modern usage 【清·生花夢】魏紫姚黃 玉樓金帶 真個錦蔚霞蒸 十分浪漫. The clipped loanword is actually just 羅曼 (attested here and here). You could argue it influenced the modern meaning of 浪漫, but that does not make the latter a loan word. –  Semaphore Jun 29 at 10:21
    
I'll use Chinese since it's already off topic and this is easier for me. For all English reading people should know, I acknowledge his statements and take my argument back.我查了一下生花梦的上下文,感觉和现今所用的含义相似,但我不会用**equivalent**一词形容。我视日语汉字为单独的书写系统,同样的汉字,借用的意思在‌​我看来是借词。虽然这个跟“以上主义”之于“民主主义”(另一个我不赞同是源自汉语的例子)相比差别小一些,但既然1673年离明治大正还是有一段距离,我想在找到其他出处‌​之前暂时保留自己的主张。 –  Zuoanqh Jul 2 at 14:42
    
嗯。我并不是想说生花梦中的`浪漫`,与现代的`浪漫`相同,但看来有其相似之处。四百年间有如此变化应算合理,当然这个变化大概也受romance影响。我想表达的意思‌​,只是`浪漫`乃中文中*既有*的语词,而非从日本引进的和制汉语。反之`民主`一词本非汉语所有,见于古文中的`民主`皆为`民之主`之意。相较之下我想前者不能算是借词‌​。 –  Semaphore Jul 3 at 4:05

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